CINCINNATI - Residents of the city's west side have reported increasedactivity and recruitment efforts from two rival motorcycle gangs:The Iron Horsemen and the Highwaymen.
Cincinnati is considered the home turf of the Iron Horsemen andthe Highwaymen have their own clubhouse in the West End, whichopened two years ago.
Bar owners have also complained of the gangs’“takeovers,” which according to Police Chief TomStreicher, is the reason police were called to JD’s HonkyTonk Bar on Saturday Sept. 18.
The police, however, have their own theories about the increasedactivity. Streicher believes Cincinnati's strategic location is thereason the gangs have interest in the city.
Streicher stated police believe that Cincinnati's future casinocould be a factor. He said motorcycle gangs would be moreinterested in an urban environment for a casino compared to thosethat exist in Southeast Indiana.
Another possible factor is that the two gangs could bepositioning themselves to deal drugs and sell prostitution.According to police, the gangs might perceive the casino as anoutlet for both.
"Is this a good route for trafficking in narcotics? Yes it is,and we know that. That's the reason why we have different unitsalong with RENU out on the highway looking at people as they movethrough here. Yeah, this is a point of distribution there's nodoubt about it," said Chief Streicher.
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